The City of Manhattan paid over $11,000 to Lenexa-based Hinkle Law Firm in its failed appeal of attorney fees stemming from a lawsuit involving a damaged residential mailbox.

Electronic copies of the records, obtained by KMAN from an open records request earlier this month, show 10 transactions were made between April 5, 2022 and March 21, 2023 totaling $11,539 from the city to the firm. Those costs are in addition to the $31,680 the city must pay in damages and legal fees, bringing the total to $43,219.

According to Board Clerk Brenda Wolf, the city’s insurance company paid all of Hinkle Law Firm’s expenses for the trial directly to the law firm. Thus, the City of Manhattan does not have record of those payments. The insurance company is required to pay over $13,000 for the Court of Appeals judgment, which will be paid directly to the court for disbursement.

Manhattan residents Marti Wickham and William Franz successfully sued the city after a city-owned snowplow in 2019 struck their stone mailbox cracking its base. The cost of the mailbox was a little more than $3,200. The Court of Appeals ruled against the city in a decision published April 7.